Considering the reliance the Gulf region has on the West as their engine of socio-economic development, one would expect there would be a mutual respect for foreign business partners and investors who want to improve the standard of living in those countries. Basic human values, such as kindness, honor, [self] respect, loyalty, and gratitude should be held at its highest standard to preserve the long held cultural traditions and beliefs communities in this region hold great pride in. It is shameful that this is not the case. It seems the stories of corruption and blatant robbery I had always heard of had finally come to a truth and become part of my story as well.
After months of battling with my business “partner” at the restaurant, it has finally come to an end, and not a favorable one for me. The business I had built with my bare hands, blood, sweat and tears was ripped out from under my feet from the partner I invited to join me in expanding my successful business without ANY compensation. Even though I was aware of the risk when I decided to leave Kuwait for personal reasons,, my partner and I had come to an agreement and understanding. In fact, he encouraged this move, which probably should have been a red flag. But, as I am a woman of my word I continued to work from home and promised to return to Kuwait every 4-6 months. Upon returning to Kuwait 5 months after my departure with plans to work on selling the Fahaheel branch and put work into the upcoming Salmiya branch my partner failed to even be in the country. This was with 3 months notice to him. That’s when I realized he was not interested in continuing to do business as promised. What followed was disrespectful name calling, verbal abuse , a lot of emailing back of forth with evil blame and malcontent, and finally a few slightly promising emails (thankfully written by a peaceful translator/mediator) where he had made and I had accepted a very low ball offer for “my shares” (a “whopping” 15,000kd). In return he wanted access to all social media. I agreed to all to finally wash my hands of everything and move on peacefully with my life. Well, it seems he changed his mind on that as well. He gave me nothing, kept everything.
Moral of the story, I ask for you to NOT continue to support the restaurant. It is my moral obligation to the world to see that these bad business practices and business bullying do not continue. I know this is an almost impossible feat, but it is worth telling to whomever will listen. The reputation of entitlement needs to be recognized and begin to be put to an end.
That said, I want to thank each and every one of you for the support you had given me, my restaurant, and any of the projects I had gotten involved with throughout the years and ask for this one last favor. I am seeking justice through you in hopes that fair business practices start NOW. It is time people start standing up for their rights, whether or not they legally have any! I have kept my mouth shut long enough in fear. That time has come to an end. At this point there is nothing to lose, but only self respect to gain.
“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”
Martin Luther King, Jr.